Unity Candle Ceremony Ideas, Products and Readings for Your Wedding

The Unity Candle Ceremony is one of the most common modern wedding traditions. In this ceremony the bride and groom each take a lit candle and simultaneously light a third larger "unity candle." They may blow out their individual lights, to symbolize that they are now one, or leave them lit, symbolizing that they have not lost their individuality with their union.

I am now offering couples the use of my exclusive Outdoor Unity Candle Stand, pictured below.

Outdoor Unity Candle Holder Photo 1   Outdoor Unity Candle Stand Photo 2

Anyone who has ever observed such an event knows that outdoor unity candle ceremonies are tricky at best. Even the slightest wind makes them pretty much impossible; often turning what was intended to be a beautiful tradition into an embarrassing or comical event. This has been bothering me for years. So I diligently searched for a solution. The result is my exclusive "Outdoor Unity Candle Stand". It works great and is truly beautiful. I have a small votive candle burning in it from the start of the ceremony. When the couple are ready for their unity ceremony they open the door, take the two long taper candles, light them from the votive and together they light the center unity candle. It is very beautiful and visible to the guests through the clear, leaded glass panels of the stand. Then they simply close the door and the candles stay burning. It works even on windy days! I am offering it's use, set up, and the unity candles to go with it for $60 per wedding.

Tips for your Unity Candle Ceremony

Tip 1...
Rather than having your mothers (or other guests) come up to light the side taper candles before your wedding begins, have them light them at the start of your Unity Candle Ceremony itself. This way not only does it add to the beauty of the ceremony, it also prevents the tapers from burning down and looking unattractive before you have a chance to use them.

Tip 2...
Have your officiant or one of your guests read a poem or a reading during the lighting. Or have someone sing a love song. It is also nice to have soft music playing during the ceremony. This adds to the romance.

Tip 3...
Having each guest light a candle is a beautiful addition to an evening wedding. The lights in the room are dimmed, then one candle is lit in the back row and the light is passed until all the guests have a burning candle. The parents of the bride and groom are the last guests to light their candles, passing the light to the bride and groom who in turn use them to light their unity candle. This ceremony symbolizes the joining together of family and friends to offer their love and support to the bride and groom. It is breathtakingly beautiful especially when accompanied by a song or poem.

Tip 4...
Remember to bring a beautiful table for the Unity Candle Ceremony and of course don't forget the lighters!

Tip 5...
Prelight and then blow out the Unity and Taper Candles before the ceremony. Candles light more easily after the wick has been lit once.

Tip 6...
Have a tea light, or small attractive oil lamp burning before the wedding, so no one has to fumble with matches or lighters during the ceremony.

Tip 7...
A Unity Candle Ceremony is also a wonderful way to get the children of blended families involved. Each child can join into the ceremony by lighting the central unity candle together with their own smaller taper candle.

Tip 8...
If you decide to have an outdoor Unity Candle Ceremony plan ahead and experiment in breezy conditions. Huricane covers from a sporting goods store, or tall glass cylinders available at stores like Home Goods can be very helpful. I have even seen couples set up an empty (and attractive) aquarium to shield the candles from the wind. And last but not least, don't forget to bring along your sense of humor! Wind can be a challenge to say the least. Think about what you or the officiant could say to take off the tension of a difficult candle lighting experience. Possibly you or she can say (with a laugh) that the situation symbolizes how the couple works together to overcome difficulties. If everyone treats the situation lightly, then it will not prove terribly awkard if the candles fail to light.

Tip 9...
Beautiful candle holders not only add to the beauty of this ceremony, they can also become a lifelong keepsake and family heirloom.

Unity Candle Ceremony Readings

# 1 The following poem by Harold Douglas is frequently recited by the officiant while the bride and groom light the Unity Candle:

Soft mists embrace two golden flames,
Alone they search the night.
Two souls adrift in dreams of love,
They seek to claim the light.
The path is long from which they came,
But sure they are it's right.
Two flames embrace in dreams of love,
Two Souls - Two Hearts Unite.

# 2 Groom and Bride will light the unity candle, as a symbol of their marriage. The candles from which they light it, represent each of them in the fullness of their individuality. They come as individuals and do not lose their identity, rather they create through their commitment the relationship of marriage. Therefore, three candles remain lit. One for each of them and one for their marriage, as symbols of their commitment to each other and to a lasting and loving marriage.

# 3 From every human being there rises a light that reaches straight to heaven. And when two souls are destined for each other and find each other, their streams of light flow together and a single brighter light goes forth from their united being." (by Baal Shem Tov)

# 4 This candle you are about to light is a candle of Marriage. Its fire is magical because it represents the light of two people in love. This candle before you is a candle of Commitment because it takes two people working together to keep it aflame. This candle is also a candle of Unity because both must come together, giving a spark of themselves, to create the new light. As you light this candle today, may the brightness of the flame shine throughout your lives. May it give you courage and reassurance in darkness, warmth and safety in the cold, and strength and joy in your bodies, minds, and spirits. May your union be forever blessed.

# 5 Family Candle Ceremony Officiant: This marriage is not just the joining of Groom and Bride, it is also the joining of [children's names], those family members present and those who are present today only in our memories. This candle before us symbolizes the joining of Groom and Bride's past and of the new family they have formed here today. It should also serve as a reminder to them of their faith in God who enriches their marriage and their family in every way. Just as your love for one another, the flames that light the individual candles will burn brighter when joined together. Extinguish the two and be forever united in God's love.

(There is an additional smaller candle for each child. The Groom and Bride light these candles, and then all together light the center Unity Candle.)

The lighting of the center candle represents not only the union of [Groom] and [Bride] in marriage, but the unity formed in this new family in which your lives will now shine as one family."

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